The Columbus Discoverers hot streak came to an end on Friday, September 11 after Lincoln North Star handed the Discoverers their first loss of the season. The Discoverers surrendered their first points of the season in the 24-19 loss, leaving them 2-1 throughout the first third of the season, despite outscoring opponents 74-24.
The Discoverers’ pitched their first of two consecutive shutouts against the Scottsbluff Bearcats on Friday, August 28 in Columbus. Contributing to the Discoverers 13-0 victory were Garrett Esch scoring three points to start the game, Trey Kobza made it 10-0 with Esch adding the extra point and another field goal to the final score
Despite multiple injuries in the game against the Bearcats, the Discoverers played a great game the following week against rival Norfolk. Head Coach Craig Williams said of the first game's injuries that, “Football is a sport that depth is vital. We have worked since the end of last year to develop that depth. It will be a challenge with a smaller roster, but these guys are capable varsity players.”
The rivalry between the Discoverers and the Panthers has been going on for years. Both schools' team colors are Maroon, and Norfolk is only forty miles north of Columbus on the famous Pan-American Highway (US 81). The rivalry is referred to as the “Battle of the Maroons” and every year, both schools battle for points toward the Maroon Cup. Before the game, Coach Williams talked about the battles he was expecting on the field by saying “Norfolk is a team that runs their system very well. They are solid in execution in all three phases of the game.”
¨Our kids have worked hard to improve their craft with a shortened offseason” Coach Williams added. The Discoverers knew they needed to build strength and play hard to improve as a team. The Discoverers have had their challenges trying to beat the Panthers, but thanks to their off-season efforts, the Discoverers have beaten Norfolk in consecutive years. Williams added, “We like our matchups in terms of athletes on the field. We feel that we can run with most teams and are as skilled as most teams we play. We expect a hard-fought battle of two teams that keeps a rivalry going.”
Brody Mickey had his first start as the Discoverers quarterback in relief of injured senior CJ Fleeman, and was a perfect 12 for 12 passing against the Norfolk defense. Mickey also carried the ball nine times for 66 yards and a pair of rushing touchdowns. Other touchdowns were scored by Garrett Esch on a 44 yard run, Liam Blaser on a pair of one yard runs, and Mason Moore on a run of ten yards to finish off the game 42-0.
Unfortunately, the Discoverers could not keep neither their scoreless nor winning streaks alive on Friday, September 11 against the Lincoln North Star Navigators. In the first half, the Navigators took a commanding 24-3 lead into the half. In the second half, the Discoverers started to heat up and managed to put sixteen unanswered points on the scoreboard. Despite the defense shutting out Lincoln in the second half, the Navigators were able to hold on and win to the tune of 24-19. Mason Moore finished with 102 yards on twenty carries and Garrett Esch had 66 on eight touches.
This next third of the Discoverers’ season features away contests at Lincoln Northeast on September 18, Kearney Senior High on October 2, and a homecoming matchup against Lincoln High in between on September 25.
Follow CHS Anchor News on Twitter, Fusfoo, and Instagram to get updates on all things Discoverers!